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The people who administer a company, create policies, and provide the support necessary to implement the owners' business objectives.


1. The persons or institutions that administer a company. That is, management has the responsibility to direct employees, set and enforce policies, and generally ensure that the company fulfills its goals (which management itself often sets). Management is responsible to the board of directors (of a publicly-traded company) and ultimately to the company's owners. In small companies, owners and managers are often the same people.

2. See: Asset management.


The process of organizing and directing human and physical resources within an ORGANIZATION so as to meet defined objectives. The key management roles are:
  1. planning how to carry out the various activities which are required to achieve the objective. This involves establishing an action programme (see BUSINESS PLAN) and an appropriate organization structure within which tasks can be subdivided (for example into production, personnel, marketing and finance); RESPONSIBILITY for them delegated; and PAY and reward systems instituted (see JOB DESIGN AND REDESIGN, WORK ORGANIZATION);
  2. CONTROL, by comparing current performance with that planned in order to monitor progress of the work. Such comparisons reveal where additional resources may be needed to achieve desired performance or when plans may need to be modified in the light of experience;
  3. COORDINATION of the tasks being undertaken, which involves synchronizing and balancing work loads and ensuring effective collaboration between the various DEPARTMENTS and GROUPS within the organization;
  4. MOTIVATION of the members of the organization, encouraging them to work effectively in performing their assigned task.

CLASSICAL MANAGEMENT THEORY portrayed management as a rational activity largely concerned with establishing routines and procedures for administering the work. More recently this emphasis has been questioned in a number of respects. Research has shown that much of the manager's working day is spent on tasks other than those suggested in this approach, for example attending retirement presentations, responding to telephone enquiries etc. Much of the manager's job involves ad hoc reactions to events. Other research has shown that managers ‘muddle through’, aiming at achieving satisfactory rather than optimum outcomes (see SATISFICING).

Recent writing on management has emphasized the LEADERSHIP aspect of the managerial function. The key issue here concerns the means by which managers can achieve effective performance from their subordinates. Two basic approaches are identified in the literature (on MANAGEMENT STYLE):

  1. task orientation, where managers' relationship with their subordinates is essentially directive, being primarily focused on getting the job done;
  2. people orientation, where managers show a greater concern for their subordinates' well-being, on the grounds that a contented workforce performs effectively.

Some believe that good leaders are born with certain personal qualities whilst others believe that these can be instilled through MANAGEMENT DEVELOPMENT. Whatever perspective is taken it should be remembered that leadership involves more than a leader: it also involves subordinates and a context. Good leadership is that which produces appropriate behaviour from others in particular situations. See ORGANIZATIONAL ANALYSIS, BOARD OF DIRECTORS.

References in periodicals archive ?
A SECOND conference for duty managers will be held in Auckland on October 20 and 21.
The duty manager got a piece of tissue and water to clean up Rhiannon.
Manageress Eileen Downey said: "One of my duty managers saw the man kicking down a guest's door on the fourth floor and leaving with a handbag and a camera.
I then have a meeting with the duty manager to check the manager's report to review if anything needs adding or changing which then goes off to all the senior managers in the company.
As duty manager blame fell on Mr Ledger who was found guilty of gross misconduct and sacked.
The Airdrie store has continued to perform strongly, however, says acting duty manager Gordon Donaldson.
David Johnson, duty manager of the pool, said: "It has been so frustrating to see all our preparations for the summer holidays put on hold while the leak was repaired.
Benn Hall duty manager George Allen said the pair proved very popular with the children.
Joy Bishop, duty manager at the Hartlepool centre, said: "We are pleased to be able to provide this course again.
Unfortunately, their expressions of concern were poorly timed,coming as they did in the backwash of a fracas at La Manga between two of Sven's players and a duty manager.
Airport duty manager Tom Hack said: "This system will save a lot of time and effort.
Business is running smoothly at the 36-year-old Gateshead store, according to duty manager Debbie Smith, who was occupied with a mass of bargain hunters making the most of a 20%-off clothing sale when we called.